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If you are a UK based education organisation you may want to join the UK education specific 'UK Access Management federation for Education and Research' (sometimes called the UK fed).

The first thing to do is check if you have UK fed enabled in OpenAthens and have our service desk enable it if not. To check: access the administration area and go to Management > Connections. Look for entry in the federations section. You will need to reference these details later.

Image AddedTheir website has all the details

If there is no existing registration our service desk can quickly add one. Your 'scope' will be the same across all federations but your entityID can be different in the UK fed if you need it to match an existing entity - e.g. if you were upgrading from Shibboleth. If you do not specify an entityID, our service desk will duplicate your OpenAthens federation entityID (recommended).

Now you are ready to register with the UK fed.

Their website should be your source of details for the process:



  1. RegisterOtherIdP 

The relevant bits of information for the second part, where were are the 'outsourced IdP'


The name of the external organisation providing the outsourcing service. This organisation must itself be a member of the federation.


The entityID of the identity provider which the external organisation proposes to use on behalf of the applicant. (The external organisation should be consulted to obtain this information.)

Insert here about us that you will need to tell them from the 'RegisterOtherIdP' pages are below. This may be all you need if you are already a member.

Prerequisites section

Most of this section is not applicable. The part that is important is that you control the entityID and scopes associated with your organisation and what that comes down to is the domain name that is being used for your entityID and scope - e.g. in is owned by you. This should have been checked by us when you joined, but you should confirm. 

Registration procedure section 

Management contact

This is the person they will want to deal with and accept future requests from. If it's not going to be you, pick someone who will recognise what any email from them is about. 

Everything else

Tell them you're using OpenAthens

Information required for registration section

The entityID

Use the entityID displayed in your administration area

If the domain name contained within the entityID belongs to the applicant rather than to the external organisation, an explicit statement by the applicant approving the use of the entityID by the external organisation.

Yes, I am happy for Eduserv to do that on my behalf

Any identifier assigned to the applicant by the external organisation.

Repeat your entityID here

A contact person (name and email address) within the external organisation.

OpenAthens Service Desk

The security domain(s) that the applicant grants authorisation to the external organisation to assert on its behalf. This normally corresponds to the applicant's registered DNS domain(s). This should be specified in lower case.






as described above. E.g.


Use the scope displayed in your administration area as described above. E.g.


Say yes, unless you are registering a new entity as part of upgrading from Shibboleth or similar

User accountability

If you say 'yes', you should ensure that the auto delete function is set longer than three months and that users will be promptly expired when they leave. If you have local policies that conflict with that you can say 'no'.  


Optional. You can say "OpenAthens". You won't need to specify versions or types as there is only one.

Optional. If you want to specify one, first make sure you have uploaded one under Preferences > Domain. You will need to do this if you're going to be using the student voter registration service.

titleLogo URL

You will need to know your OpenAthens domain


(usually the same as


your scope


) and your




number. Both can be seen on the


Metadata address:


Organisations page (

Awesome Icon
). Once you have those you just need to plug them into:









Once you've filled them in, test the link - e.g.

Organisation display name

Probably the same as you've told us

Organisation URL

Your website's homepage

Contacts - support, technical and administrative - should all be:

"OpenAthens Service Desk -"

Automatically generated metadata

In most cases, this will be in the form:



... where domain is your OpenAthens domain, usually the same as your scope. See: How to access your metadata

If you want to view this in your browser you may need to add a ?browser parameter need to have a different entityID in the UK Access Management federation from the one you have in the OpenAthens federation then you will need to add /c/ukfed to the end of the link, e.g.metadata address - examples:


For most users:

Manually specifying connection settings

The metadata address should be sufficient for most SAML targets, however some may instead want you to specify endpoints, certificates and other data manually instead. If they do:

Endpoints / SSO address:

UK fed specific entityID:





This will be the x509 certificate in the metadata, topped and tailed as follows. This is sometimes called PEM format.

Code Block
Issuer / IDP issuer / identifier

Your entityID, e.g.

Binding / Binding type / IDP Binding

This should be 'Redirect' rather than 'Post'.